As mobile digital TV starts to gain prominence, two companies are pushing a universal standard they hope will be adopted by broadcasters and handset makers alike.

Software specialists Thin Multimedia and mobile TV chip manufacturers Siano Mobile Silicon have developed a common "multi-standard" platform for use on all mobile devices.

It would mean mobile TV could be picked up easily on many different mobile devices - phones, laptops, media players - and operated by a common interface.

Supported by Windows Mobile, Linux and Nucleus - though no mention of Symbian - the new multi-standard works with both Digital Video Broadcasting Handheld ( DVB-H ) and Digital Multimedia Broadcasting ( DMB ) - the two main mobile TV technologies

"Mobile handset manufacturers are focusing on reducing costs and shortening their development cycle," said David Shin, director of mobile TV at Thin Multimedia. "This integrated, multi-format solution is what the market has been clamouring for."

While countries like Germany and South Korea, which already have mobile TV services, are certainly keen on a more universal solutions, the UK can only sit and watch as it waits for its first mobile TV network.